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acephalous

[ey-sef-uh-luh s] /eɪˈsɛf ə ləs/
adjective
1.
Also, acephalic
[ey-suh-fal-ik] /ˌeɪ səˈfæl ɪk/ (Show IPA)
. Zoology. headless; lacking a distinct head.
2.
without a leader or ruler.
Origin of acephalous
1725-1735
1725-35; < Greek aképhalos; see a-6, -cephalous
Dictionary.com Unabridged
Based on the Random House Dictionary, © Random House, Inc. 2015.
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Examples from the Web for acephalous
Historical Examples
  • He found it more 'acephalous' than ever; 'less order; less unity of purpose.'

  • Such is a summary description of all the acephalous Molluscs.

    The Ocean World: Louis Figuier
  • I cannot imagine anything more manifestly made to be a tyranny than such an acephalous aristocracy.

    What I Saw in America G. K. Chesterton
  • But in its present acephalous condition it is but a fragment of sciencea headless corpse, unfit to rank among complete sciences.

  • Anarchism, with its knife and bomb, is a miscarriage of Socialism, an acephalous birth from that fruitful mother.

    New Worlds For Old Herbert George Wells
  • Its cercari are usually found in an acephalous mollusc, known by the name of Cyclas cornea.

    Animal Parasites and Messmates P. J. Van Beneden
  • Almost all bivalve shells, or those of acephalous mollusca, are marine, about ten only out of ninety genera being freshwater.

British Dictionary definitions for acephalous

acephalous

/əˈsɛfələs/
adjective
1.
having no head or one that is reduced and indistinct, as certain insect larvae
2.
having or recognizing no ruler or leader
Word Origin
C18: via Medieval Latin from Greek akephalos. See a-1, -cephalic
Collins English Dictionary - Complete & Unabridged 2012 Digital Edition
© William Collins Sons & Co. Ltd. 1979, 1986 © HarperCollins
Publishers 1998, 2000, 2003, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2009, 2012
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Word Origin and History for acephalous
adj.

"headless," 1731, from French acéphale + -ous, or directly from Late Latin acephalus, from Greek akephalos, from a- "not" + kephale "head" (see cephalo-).

Online Etymology Dictionary, © 2010 Douglas Harper
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